More Than Just a Dog

Alright folks, today was probably one of the roughest days that I have encountered in a while. Today, we had to put my beloved pet, Lady Mae, down. Almost 16 years old, I had this precious dog since I was 7 years old.

I remember like it was yesterday. It was a Friday night that I first met Lady. Every Friday night, when I was younger, my parents, sister, and myself would visit my grandparents and have pizza [my grandpa never ate the pizza, at least not in front of us – he didn’t like drinking beer after he ate – priorities :)]. On this particular Friday, my mother was at a meeting of some sort. My dad said we were going for a ride [which is not uncommon for him]. We ended up at a place in Jamestown, MI. We looked at dogs, but didn’t get one. A few weeks later, My mom, sister, and I were out running errands. We came home, and my dad had purchased a food dish, crate, collar, and leash. We went to go get Lady. I remember the excitement waiting in the seat. We got a box, with towels in it, to put her in when we got in the car. When we arrived, I remember looking at all the puppies. There were 4 or 5 girls and 1 boy puppy. My mom had liked the way that Lady’s markings were on her head, so my mom chose that dog, and we named her Lady Mae Bethany Sevic. When we got her in the car, I remember looking in the box, and being so excited to finally have a puppy! I had always loved dogs, and I am sure I pestered my parents for one! I even wrote a book about getting Lady. There was something about that day that I can never forget. I remember feeding the dogs treats, while we were there, even the puppies that we did not take home. I can vividly remember the line of dog houses on the right hand side of the lot, where there were multiple kinds of dogs that the owner would breed. The excitement that occurs when something amazing happens is unforgettable.

Eventually, the days blur together, and there are endless memories that I could talk about. We taught Lady to ring a bell when she wanted to go outside. The toys she played with. All the car rides to my grandparents home [because of course she came for Friday night pizza nights too].

She had enough problems, too. She had a sensitive stomach, and could not eat pork. We found this out eventually, but I remember one time when I had made myself hot dogs for lunch. We didn’t have an hot dog buns, so i used regular bread. I made two hot dogs. I set them on an end table in our family room. Went in the kitchen for a drink. Came back into the family room, and found only one piece of bread left. This cutie pie ate both my hot dogs, and a piece of bread. She was truly a stinker, but my naive eight year old self did not know, “Don’t leave food – especially food that dogs really want – in the reach of a dogs mouth.”

Lady had to have a few surgeries [I will not go into detail…let’s just say it was a tad bit gross] but she was the best, walking into walls with her plastic cone.

There will always be “stories” that are told about my princess [I had numerous nicknames for her]. One of which occurred shortly after we moved into our home in 2002. The dog’s name is Lady…you can probably imagine that it can be a bit awkward at times when you yell, “Lady….Lady,” espcially when there are grown woman, who are also called “lady” around. Lady – the dog, not human, was a very curious dog. She was a beagle, brittany spaniel mutt, who loved other dogs, and hated cats, rabbits, etc….she was a beagle, she had hunting blood in her veins. Lady was outside with my dad one day, eventually Lady followed another dog across the street, and eventually into a house. My dad was shouting, “Lady…Lady,” trying to get Lady’s attention. Eventually, a lady (human) let her own dog inside her home. She was on the phone, so she was distracted, and did not see Lady (dog) into her home. Well as my dad is shouting “Lady,” to get our pet’s attention, there was a commotion in the home. The lady (human) had a dog AND a cat. The cat was running around the walls, because, well, Lady hated cats. The moral of the story, be careful when you name your dog Lady….hence we called her Lady Mae. 🙂

To the endless amount of forced cuddles, dressing up in clothes she didn’t want to wear, begging for food, she always gave me a look. A look that described, “COME ON.” I loved this look, whether I was teasing her, or herself begging. I truly miss having her communicate through her eyes. Well, I truly miss everything about her. Although she was quite annoying, at times, I miss those moments. Cherish those moments. Cherish the times that they are waking you up at 4 am in the morning because they want to go outside [thanks mom – you handled more the the early am’s than me], or ringing their bell to go outside, a million times, after she just came back inside 5 minutes ago. Not wanting to go to bed, because she was super comfortable and didn’t want to get up. Cherish EVERYTHING.

My old bedroom door did not latch. Back in her prime, Lady would come upstairs to my bedroom, and want to join me while I slept for a few more hours. At times I hated her coming into my room, because she woke me up. Eventually, when she did not come upstairs as much, I missed those moments that woke me up at 5 am with a dog that would hog even a queen sized bed.

Lady was a spoiled dog. She was loved by many, and was fed scraps, given treats, and was even given her own lazy boy. Well she was given the lazy boy, but she made it her own. Lady loved going into the basement when anyone was working out, or my mom was working in her sewing room. Lady was allowed up on the furniture downstairs, and basically “owned” a blue lazy boy. It was covered in her hair, which basically told everyone “It’s mine.” I use to spend a lot of nights in the basement watching the TV shows I wanted [This was before I had a TV in my own room, and Netflix]. Lady always joined me while I was in my “castle.” I loved her company, even if she was not playing or cuddling. I loved having her presence in the room. Whenever I wanted her to come upstairs, she would get off the chair by stretching, walk a few steps, and then shake. It was predictable. When she just stood there, I would shake along her so she would move faster. Lady loved routine as much as I did.

As I write, just a few stories, I cannot help but miss Lady, my best friend. My pumpkin, babe, lady bug, sweetheart, princess, etc….the list could go on and on. I miss her an incredible amount, but I am blessed that I got to spend almost 16 years with a wonderful dog. There will be no dog in this universe that could replace my baby girl. I eventually will get another dog, because I love dogs, but there will be no dog that will ever be Lady.

I miss you babe. Thanks for watching over me. Enjoy heaven. I am sure that you are playing with all your other dog friends, grandma and grandpa, and everyone else up in heaven.

Love you,

Jess